“It has become a reality.”

When asked about the selection of Kim Joo-seong (23, FC Seoul) for the national team, a smile spread across Seoul coach Ahn Ik-soo’s lips. This is because he achieved the promotion to the national team that his pupil hoped to set as his goal. Coach Ahn said, “During the last winter training in Thailand, I was told to think about the ‘why I came here’. It was my opinion that the national team would be my goal, but that has already become a reality.”

Previously, Kim Joo-seong was called by coach Jürgen Klinsmann (Germany) and was named in the national team roster for the June A match. With Kim Min-jae (Napoli) missing from basic military training and Kim Young-kwon (Ulsan Hyundai) injured, there was a big leak in the central defense, but coach Klinsman selected Kim Joo-seong, a center back born in 2000. It is the first time in about a year that Kim Joo-seong has been on the national team since the East Asian Football Federation (EAFF) E-1 Championship (East Asian Cup) in July last year when he was a member of Sangmu Kim Cheon. It is the first time that the European faction is called up for the A-match period.스포츠토토

He is the ‘core’ leading Seoul’s defense this season. He is even the only player on the team who appeared as a starter in the pre-opening game. There were only two games in which he was out as a substitute, and even this only came out of the ground at the end of the game. Not only his appearance record, but also indicators such as personal records show the indicators of a top-class defender in the league. In particular, the number of victories in aerial competitions was 84, ranking first among domestic players. Records such as 8th place in clearing (135 times) and 11th place in interception (71 times) are also maintained at the top of the league.

Kim Joo-seong made his A-match debut in the East Asian Cup match against Hong Kong in July last year. Photo = Korea Football Association

FC Seoul defender Kim Joo-seong (left). Courtesy of FC Seoul

One of the more notable records is passing. He attempted 1413 passes, of which 1358 were successful, recording a pass success rate of 96.1%. All are league 1. In particular, forward passes are second only to Kim Young-kwon in both attempts (545) and successes (504), and the success rate is 92.5%, which is higher than Kim Young-kwon. It means that while taking a large part in the build-up behind Seoul, they are showing good performance at the same time.

This growth rate is even more significant for a reason. This is because the long-term task of Korean soccer is to find a partner, Kim Min-jae, who is also the ‘post Kim Young-gwon’. Kim Young-kwon is still a key defender of the national team, but since he was born in 1990, he must gradually find a replacement. Kim Joo-seong is a rare left-footed center back like Kim Young-kwon, and they have one thing in common: they have strengths in build-up and delivery.

Kim Joo-seong is also learning a lot from watching Kim Young-kwon play. He met with reporters after the match against Incheon United held at the Incheon soccer stadium on the 7th and said, “Since Kim Young-kwon is the same left-footed player, he tries to follow a lot by seeing how he builds up or defends. Kim Min-jae is also a world-class player, so if we train together later, I think we can learn a lot from that alone.” “I know how honorable the national team is. I want to do my best to show what I can do.”

Coach Ahn hopes that Kim Joo-sung will play an active role as a member of the national team for a long time. He knows how diligently a player usually works, so he wishes for the success of his student more. “He is a player who works hard. He is far ahead of other players in terms of the amount of time he invests in football,” he said.

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